U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > New York > Albany area
 [Register]
Albany area Albany - Schenectady - Troy - Saratoga Springs metro area
Please register to participate in our discussions with 1.5 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
Jump to a detailed profile or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Business Search - 14 Million verified businesses
Search for:  near: 
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 04-07-2012, 06:26 PM
 
239 posts, read 230,164 times
Reputation: 236
Default I enjoy the Capital Region but..

I’ve been living in Albany for six years, hopefully after next year I’ll be relocating to a bigger city somewhere warmer. I’m not here to bash the NYS Capital Region, and in fact I think the region is underrated in many ways. There are many great colleges in the area which bring a lot of diversity for a city its size. The suburbs are very nice ranging from “cookie-cutter,” quaint, upscale, and ruralish with great schools. The Capital Region also is within short distance to the Adirondacks, Catskills, and Lake George for outdoor recreation. Plus Saratoga is charming. However, I can’t help but notice the flaws of Albany. As I said I’m not trying to bash Albany and no place is perfect, but I feel like many of the negatives of the area can be fixed and they haven’t been.

For one, I am not impressed with the actual cities of Albany, Schenectady, and Troy. Particularly Schenectady and Troy, most of it is run down and has high crime. I know Schenectady had a big revitalization project in the downtown area near Proctors, so there has been some progress. Albany doesn’t seem to be as run down, with the exception of a few areas, but it can use some major improvements. For being such small cities there seems to be a lot of crime in relation to their sizes. It’s a shame because these cities have some beautiful architecture. I feel like downtown Albany has so much potential, especially near the Empire State Plaza. If the city added some small coffee shops, boutique stores, bakeries, etc. it could be quite charming and attract more people to shop and visit. If downtown Albany were more like downtown Annapolis, MD it would be much more pleasant place IMO.

My other complaint is the economy. I don’t think the economy is as depressed as some other areas of upstate NY or even other areas of the country, but I would say it is bleak. There seems to be enough jobs for its population, but not much diversity in types of jobs which probably has to do with the industry. State government will always be one of the biggest employers since it’s the NYS Capital Region, but there seems to be a lack of diversified private industry. The only big private sector in the area is GE, along with a few biotechnology industries, and a very small amount of accounting and financing firms (I’m not sure if Knolls is considered a private industry). There have been rumors that the Capital Region was going to become another Silicon Valley, but I haven’t seen this happen at all during the time I lived here. I think the Capital Region needs to invest in the possibility of attracting more private sector industries. The economy here is very pale when compared to Austin, TX, which is another state capital city that has taken measures to attract private sector industries.

These are just some thoughts I had. Again I’m not trying to bash the Capital Region, I’m just asking if anyone else here has noticed the same flaws as I have and why they haven't been addressed.

I know Trader Joe’s is coming, but a Whole Foods and Wegmans would be nice to add to the region as well. I also think the area needs to open a Pinkberry or Red Mango. More gym options, such as LA Fitness, would be nice as well.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 04-08-2012, 05:37 AM
 
4,099 posts, read 7,536,156 times
Reputation: 4406
Default Town of Saratoga high taxes driving people out

You listed many valid points. Like many areas around the country, upstate is suffering from the economy. Albany-Troy-Schnectady need industry/jobs to get it back on it's feet.

Other areas in the capital region need to lower their property tax to attract business and individuals alike. Greenwich is building a Wal-Mart, Tractor Supply, new restaurants and has a reasonable tax rate versus Saratoga, which doesn't encourage businesses and the high property taxes are driving people away. Saratoga's recent reassessment was so ridiculously unfair, I doubt someone took the time to do due diligence, rather let a computer spit it out. The farms in Saratoga all were increased. Eventually many of the farms will close and the Town of Saratoga will fall to blight.

Schuylerville School District tax is ridiculous. Even though people voted against the turf, the school board put it in anyway. Recently opening a Middle School, yet enrollment is down and will continue to go down because people are moving out.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-09-2012, 12:42 PM
 
Location: Atlanta & NYC
6,629 posts, read 5,485,900 times
Reputation: 6321
Awesome post. I hope everyone who is considering moving to the Capital Region sees this before they pack up and relocate. I never understood why people from out of state move to Troy or Schenectady.

I lived in the Albany area for about 9 years and jeez, it just doesn't have too much to offer unless you're in the medical field as you stated.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-09-2012, 01:40 PM
 
30,830 posts, read 35,867,649 times
Reputation: 6145
Quote:
Originally Posted by ja1myn View Post
Awesome post. I hope everyone who is considering moving to the Capital Region sees this before they pack up and relocate. I never understood why people from out of state move to Troy or Schenectady.

I lived in the Albany area for about 9 years and jeez, it just doesn't have too much to offer unless you're in the medical field as you stated.
Are Troy and Schenectady that bad though? People make them out to be a couple of the worst cities in the country.

Also, the Capital Region has been growing slowly, but steadily for decades. There is more to the area than just health care jobs too. Capital Region Jobs

it may be a matter of getting an education in the industries that are doing well and most jobs aren't going to come from big companies. Look at smaller and medium sized companies or colleges for potential job opportunities. These may be some examples: https://amri.hua.hrsmart.com/hrsmart...bSearch/search

Globalfoundries Jobs - Albany, NY | Simply Hired

and then there is this: Albany has 5th strongest small business sector in East, study says - The Business Review
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-09-2012, 03:40 PM
 
Location: Atlanta & NYC
6,629 posts, read 5,485,900 times
Reputation: 6321
Quote:
Originally Posted by ckhthankgod View Post
Are Troy and Schenectady that bad though? People make them out to be a couple of the worst cities in the country.

Also, the Capital Region has been growing slowly, but steadily for decades. There is more to the area than just health care jobs too. Capital Region Jobs

it may be a matter of getting an education in the industries that are doing well and most jobs aren't going to come from big companies. Look at smaller and medium sized companies or colleges for potential job opportunities. These may be some examples: https://amri.hua.hrsmart.com/hrsmart...bSearch/search

Globalfoundries Jobs - Albany, NY | Simply Hired

and then there is this: Albany has 5th strongest small business sector in East, study says - The Business Review
Troy and Schenectady are definitely not the worst cities in America, but the fact that so much crime is concentrated within them makes them undesirable to live in. I would not want to live in either of them. The only thing that makes people want to live there is the lower cost of living which is due to it's undesirable atmosphere.

Have you ever been to Schenectady or Troy? Just curious.

The whole job thing is this: most jobs are concentrated in the same or similar field. Medical field dominates. If you're not in this field, then you're pretty much out of luck. I know people that have gone to school for engineering and can't find a job yet I also know some who have gotten jobs before they've graduated with their two year nursing degree.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-09-2012, 04:08 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in America
3,585 posts, read 2,997,884 times
Reputation: 3123
Quote:
Originally Posted by ja1myn View Post

The whole job thing is this: most jobs are concentrated in the same or similar field. Medical field dominates. If you're not in this field, then you're pretty much out of luck. I know people that have gone to school for engineering and can't find a job yet I also know some who have gotten jobs before they've graduated with their two year nursing degree.
Wrong! The medical field is strong in the area. However, it's not the ONLY field available. Education and politics are HUGE in the area. So are tech jobs. Maybe you've noticed the area being nicknamed Tech Valley?

People who go to nursing school and are offered a job before graduation is due to the fact that the area has had a severe nursing shortage for years. It is not like that everywhere.

As for those who go to school for engineering, most engineers I know don't bother to look for a job until they get their master's degree. And even then they have to do their apprenticeship. My cousin has finally finished hers and is studying like mad for the exam she has to take.

There's a lot that goes into recent graduates being hired. Your degree isn't the only thing being looked at. And in case you haven't noticed, the entire country has been in an economic downturn which is going onto 4 years soon. Recent graduates will have a very hard time getting jobs compared to folks with 10+ years experience.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-09-2012, 04:18 PM
 
Location: Atlanta & NYC
6,629 posts, read 5,485,900 times
Reputation: 6321
Quote:
Originally Posted by ss20ts View Post
Wrong! The medical field is strong in the area. However, it's not the ONLY field available. Education and politics are HUGE in the area. So are tech jobs. Maybe you've noticed the area being nicknamed Tech Valley?

Of course it's not the only field available. But how can you say education is huge? School districts around the region are cutting staff and some schools are merging to cut costs. I've never heard the area nicknamed as Tech Valley and I've only heard of one or two businesses going into the area that are tech-based. Maybe I just don't keep up with the flow enough.

People who go to nursing school and are offered a job before graduation is due to the fact that the area has had a severe nursing shortage for years. It is not like that everywhere.

A nursing shortage?! Everyone and their mother seems to be a nurse. I don't see how there could be a shortage.

As for those who go to school for engineering, most engineers I know don't bother to look for a job until they get their master's degree. And even then they have to do their apprenticeship. My cousin has finally finished hers and is studying like mad for the exam she has to take.

Can't really comment on that because I don't know too much about the life of an engineer and the required education, etc.

There's a lot that goes into recent graduates being hired. Your degree isn't the only thing being looked at. And in case you haven't noticed, the entire country has been in an economic downturn which is going onto 4 years soon. Recent graduates will have a very hard time getting jobs compared to folks with 10+ years experience.

Right on. But that has nothing to do with what I said. I was saying that kids who go to school for any type of medical subject seem to get hired almost instantly versus others who study other subjects.
This is all just from my perspective, so don't get offended by my views.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-09-2012, 07:55 PM
 
30,830 posts, read 35,867,649 times
Reputation: 6145
I'm surprised that GE or the new jobs in Malta aren't hiring folks even with the openings I've seen.

I still don't think that all of Schenectady and Troy is bad. They are urban and with that, you are going to have your good and bad neighborhoods. I've even heard some people talk about Amsterdam and other smaller blue collar cities in the area, but I don't buy all of the hype in that regard. I doubt they are Mayberry, but they aren't East St. Louis either.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-10-2012, 10:13 AM
 
Location: Albany, NY
315 posts, read 372,937 times
Reputation: 634
I think the original poster makes some good points. The area has tons to offer and is underrated, but it lacks cohesiveness. I sometimes say about the area that the total is less than the sum of its parts. This is partly due to the fact that even though the region has half a million people, there is not one big city, but 4 small ones.

I am cautious about attracting new businesses, though. It depends what is done to attract them. If it is providing them with huge subsidies and tax breaks, than I am opposed. I think the money that was given to Global Foundries is close to being criminal given all the other needs of the area and the fact that the number of jobs promised is very small. That money could have been used to give hundreds or thousands of local businesses grants or loans. Local businesses have roots in the area and are much more likely to stay here long-term than to leave on a whim when they get another offer elsewhere. Giving money to multiple small companies also spreads out the risk of failure. I recently met with the spouse of someone who moved here from Texas for work in the semiconductor industry. She said that that industry is very volatile, and the Capita District seems to be relying on it too much for growth. Schenectady's experience with GE should have taught us not to put all our eggs in one industry's basket.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-10-2012, 12:09 PM
 
30,830 posts, read 35,867,649 times
Reputation: 6145
Quote:
Originally Posted by ja1myn View Post
This is all just from my perspective, so don't get offended by my views.
I think that when ss20ts said Education, he/she meant Higher Education. There are quite a few colleges in the area and they have openings as well.

Here's the Tech Valley website: Housing

and more information: Tech Valley - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Center for Economic Growth (CEG) - New York

Healthcare is pretty big throughout Upstate NY, with openings available.

More info: New York State Hospital Profile

New York's Private Colleges & Universities (http://www.nycolleges.org/locations.php - broken link)

SUNY: Map of Campuses
SUNY: Complete Campus List

I can see the lack of continuity in terms of the 4 city centers, eventhough Albany is probably viewed as the de facto main city center. On the other hand, I think the amount of smaller scale forms of urbanity in the form of villages and small cities can be a plus for the area in terms of walkability. Cohoes seems to be an example of such a place trying to take advantage of its small scale urbanity.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:




Over $84,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > New York > Albany area

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2014, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 - Top